MOON WATCHERS by Reza Jalali

MOON WATCHERS

Shirin’s Ramadan Miracle
by , illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 9

KIRKUS REVIEW

Shirin lives in a suburban U.S. setting where she and her father can go outside and spot the new moon as Ramadan begins. The nine-year-old wants to fast this year—after all, her 12-year-old brother is doing it—but her parents tell her that she is too young. Her grandmother comforts her with a story about a boy who fasts part-time, and Shirin quickly recognizes the boy as her father. She, too, begins in the same way, but it is her new willingness to help others that leads to the changes in her relationship with her sibling that create the small but important “miracle.” Jalali is from Iran, but his story is about universal Muslim practices, with a few specific details indicated in O’Brien’s intense watercolors. The grandmother regularly wears a headscarf, while the mother does not. Both adult women wear chadors during prayer, and the grown-ups also use Shi’ite heart-shaped prayer stones at the tops of their prayer mats. This quiet story adds to the small collection of books about Muslim families that can counteract the often harmful messages seen in the media. (Picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: June 1st, 2010
ISBN: 978-0-88448-321-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Tilbury House
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15th, 2010




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